The eight-episode show sees Lindsay and her co-host, recording artist Travis Mills (also the boyfriend to Riverdale's Madelaine Petsch) helping people who've been ghosted by friends, former lovers, and family members track them down and get to the bottom of why they were "ghosted" in the first place.
It may be surprising to many that Lindsay would go from attorney, to reality star and eventually to MTV docuseries host, but to her, this is exactly where she should be. Refinery29 caught up with new Miami resident on the phone to talk about her journey from law to her new show, and her own harrowing experience with ghosting.
Refinery29: What made you take the leap from law to entertainment?
Rachel Lindsay: "I felt like I had hit a plateau, where I was just going through the motions, and I needed a change. I felt fulfilled in the sense that I knew I wanted to be an attorney and I was living that dream out, but it wasn't enough for me. And long story short, I do The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, and it turned out the best way it could for me because I just got married two weeks ago.
"Once I decided to make that switch from my life in law, it really opened a lot of new doors for me. I come from a sports management and sports law background, so I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to work with ESPN. And from there other doors have opened in regards to guest hosting, a podcast, and eventually to doing Ghosted, where again I use the skills from everything I've done in life. So even in this show you see my lawyer skills come out, and even certain things I learned while doing The Bachelorette."
What are some of those skills that you apply to working on this show?
"Obviously my legal background helps with the investigating part, and having to interrogate and having to sift through certain facts and put pieces together. But having to navigate through 31 different relationships and personalities on The Bachelorette, and having to try to get people to open up and trust you is what Travis and I are having to do on Ghosted. Because The Haunted [the name given on the show to the person who's been ghosted], come to us having tried to solve these issues on their own, and as a last resort they've come to us. So we have to use our backgrounds and skills to put that together to help people get those answers that they need."
Do you watch a lot of reality TV?
"I am admittedly a big Real Housewives fan, and I'm not ashamed of it. I have watched a lot of reality TV but a different format than this. I'm honestly glad I didn't come in being a big Catfish fan or something, because this show deals with a completely different, more common issue. I can come in with an open mind and a different perspective when tackling these cases."
Have you ever been ghosted?
"About 10 years ago I was long distance-dating a guy, but we still saw each other frequently. I was with a friend and we were talking about how a lot of people back home had kids, and I said that my boyfriend was an exception. My friend looked at me like I was crazy. He called him right in front of me, put him on speaker phone, and asked him what he was doing — and my boyfriend says that he's at the mall with his baby and his baby mama.
I eventually took him back, because when it happened we were technically on a break, though I should have broken up with him because he had kept this all from me. But then I kept dating him, and one day I called him up and found out that he had changed his number on me and completely disappeared from my life. So should I have seen the red flags? Absolutely. But it was still devastating. And this was a time when social media wasn't prevalent, so I really had no way of trying to find him on some other platform. He was just gone. So what I did — and what we see in a lot of these cases on the show — is that I blamed myself. I thought that it must've been something that I had done wrong, or wanted to know if he was OK or apologize. "
Did you ever see him again?
"It wasn't until another two years when I ran into him and I was able to talk to him about it. And he said, 'I didn't know how to leave you other than to completely disappear. I was too afraid to confront you,' which is a similar thought process that a lot of people on this season have. One of the reasons I wanted to do this show is because I get it. I know what's it's like to be ghosted, and to be in that place where you're stuck, you're putting the blame on yourself, and want to know what happened. Travis and I are just trying to give these people closure. That's what I want people to know when they watch this show. Of course, it's supposed to be entertaining. But at the same time it's bigger than that."
"I know what's it's like to be ghosted, and to be in that place where you're stuck, you're putting the blame on yourself, and want to know what happened."
Being ghosted is truly a terrible feeling.
:"And to top it off, it's embarrassing! When it happened to me, I didn't know anyone with a similar crazy story. And now it's so common that it's becoming acceptable, and I don't think it should be. You learn that when you watch this series, because you see how it affects the person that was ghosted."
Were you planning your wedding during the filming?
"I was and had an amazing wedding planner, but I was right in the thick of things. That's why this is an exciting time: I just got married, went straight from the wedding to Greece for the honeymoon, which was better than I could've ever imagined, and now the whole world gets to see my baby. Bryan is so excited and proud of me, it's really sweet.
Has Bryan ever ghosted anyone?
"Come to think of it, I think I've asked Bryan about ghosting but it wasn't anything serious. The cases that we deal with are with people they've been with or known for years, not just someone they went on one date with, which is probably more of Bryan's situation (laughs)."
MTV’s Ghosted: Love Gone Missing airs on Tuesdays at 9pm EST/ 8pm CST.
This interview has been edited and condensed.